If you’re a studio owner, you know that in order for your business to run smoothly, you need motivated instructors and happy clients. Unfortunately, you can’t have one without the other. If you’re striving for high retention rates and instructors that embody your core values, you’ll need both of these to thrive.
First impressions are super important, and having a seamless intake process for your staff members to follow will help ensure a great experience for new clients.
The intake process can begin before your client even steps foot into the studio. When they sign up to take their first class and create a profile, prompt them with a welcome email that includes your studio intake form. The intake form should include questions about their goals, what they’re looking to get out of their practice, how often they like to take class, as well as any injuries or concerns they might have. For first time students who visit the studio prior to signing up online, paper intake forms are a great way to capture this information, and are a natural connection point for desk staff.
A structured intake process has three main benefits:
Their approach to welcoming in new individuals is key to whether or not they are retained. Make sure the intake process follows your clients through to after class, and encourage your instructors to reach out to them afterwards. Your instructors can use a tool such as Fitgrid’s Pro App to send personalized messages to clients after class to get feedback on their experience. This will allow instructors to feel useful and clients to feel taken care of.
An inviting physical space creates a welcoming environment, a place where everyone wants to be. Using friendly and inviting signage, carving out space for a cozy seating area, and creating a mood with candles and music will help everyone who enters your space feel calm and positive. When creating the ambiance of your studio, focus on hitting as many of the five senses as possible.
In addition to the physical space your staff can cultivate a welcoming environment through their personal interactions with clients. Encourage them to connect with clients before, during and after class. Your clients will look forward to being in an accepting environment where they feel proud to be a part of your studio community.
Core values are a key component of any successful movement business. If you haven’t created core values for your studio space yet, think back to what you envisioned when you first opened your space. What type of energy did you want it to hold? What were you hoping your clients would feel in the space? How did you want your staff to interact with clients and one another? Use these questions as a starting point to create values that feel true to your studio.
Once you’ve created those values, make sure staff and clients know what they are. Include them as focal points in your newsletter and social posts, blog about them, and consider putting them up on the walls. Clearly communicated values allow studio-goers a way to connect to the space and each other, creating a sense of community and commonality.
Motivated staff and returning clients are key to the success of any studio. By following the guidance outlined above, you’ve started down the path to a thriving studio. Your community – clients and staff alike – will thank you for helping them to feel appreciated, supported and welcome.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
FitGrid is a community management system designed for boutique fitness studios to engage clients on a personal level